Sun, 11 Jul 2004 17:52:20 GMT

Who will be liable if and when real life fails to follow the rose-tinted script?. The Prince of Wales is known for speaking his mind – a quality I greatly admire, even when I do not agree. (For example, his criticisms of modernist architecture pissed off more than one British architect, and I can't say I entirely blame them, but LÌ©on Krier and Nikos Salingaros make some good points in Charles' defense.)

But today the BBC reports that the Prince warns of science risks, and he gets my full support:

“Discovering the secrets of the Universe is one thing; ensuring that those secrets are used wisely and appropriately is quite another.”

“What exactly are the risks attached to each of the techniques under discussion, who will bear them, and who will be liable if and when real life fails to follow the rose-tinted script?”

He expressed concern that only an estimated 5% of the EU's nanotechnology research budget is being spent on “examining the environmental, social and ethical dimension.”

“That certainly doesn't inspire confidence.”

No it doesn't. Actually, it kind of scares me. [Purse Lip Square Jaw]

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the fear only speaks toward the inadequate funding in comparison, not as much as to the costs…. lots of times funders underestimate the need of social research, but rarely do they overbudget the cost.

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